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Vendors smack Thunderbolt punters with massive pricing markup

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There's expensive and then there's Thunderbolt device pricing... and that will make you gulp.

WD has just announced it is shipping its My Book Thunderbolt Duo, a dual hard drive fitted with Intel's Thunderbolt interface. Jody Bradshaw, WD's general manager for consumer storage solutions, said; "Its dual Thunderbolt ports provide amazing creative flexibility while allowing daisy-chaining of up to six My Book Thunderbolt Duo drives or other high performance peripherals for fast and efficient workflow."

WD quotes speeds of up to 10Gbit/s, twice USB 3.0's 5Gbit/s and blowing USB 2.0's 480Mbit/s completely away. But you will pay for the speed. The new My Books cost €599.00 for the 4TB version and €699.00 for the 6TB gear. The dollar price is the same as the euro price, by the way.

A My Book Studio II 6TB external desktop hard drive costs $429 online. You are paying $270 for the Thunderbolt speed premium.

It's not just WD that is pricing up Thunderbolt... At Apple's flagship Regent Street store in London a 1TB LaCie Little Big Disk Thunderbolt product will cost you £349.95, and the Thunderbolt cable will cost you £39 more. A LaCie 1TB Little Big Disk with FireWire 800, USB 3 and eSATA will set you back only £212.

The Thunderbolt speed premium costs you £138 on top of the hard drive, a 65 per cent uplift in LaCie's case. With WD it's a 63 per cent uplift, but our pricing didn't include the cable. Guess I'll be Thunderbolt-less until prices come down. ®

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